Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. James Bovard
The FOIA documents released by the OSTP, totaling about 50 pages, can be summed up by one line written by the OSTP public relations officer Phil Larson whose signature is attached to the White House ET petition reply. In an e-mail to David Weaver and Bob Jacobs at NASA, Larson stated, “We got tagged with drumming up a ‘please acknowledge the aliens” petition from ‘We The People’ feature on WhiteHouse.org.”
The FOIA Results
The first FOIA filed with the OSTP asked what the OSTP office had used for research to produce their official government statement that there is “no credible evidence” that ETs have visited Earth. The answer according to the FOIA was nothing – they had no documents in the office on the subject of UFOs, or extraterrestrials – not a single piece of paper. (This OSTP claim is at odds with an FOIA that they answered in March 2011 where they did find “UFO” documents – see http://www.scribd.comdoc/70845097/All-UFO-documents-from-the-Executive-Office-of-the-President-Office-of-Science-and-Technology-Policy
The official conclusion of “no credible evidence” by the White House is therefore not supported by any evidence itself – whether credible or not. The Obama White House has become like a student who produces a book report without reading the book. Even more unpardonable is the fact that the FOIA exposed the fact that the OSTP did not even look for any evidence. The conclusion – the scientific arm of White House has been caught rigging the experiment to come to a preordained conclusion.
Another of the FOIAs requested all the drafts of the ET petition response in order to determine who wrote it, which outside agencies had input on the wording, and what words were changed to arrive at a final draft. This FOIA for the investigation of the drafts was intended to get to the thinking that went into producing the official response. It has worked well in the past such as in the case of the famous “alien invasion” remark in the 1987 United Nations speech by Ronald Reagan. The drafts of that speech showed that the alien invasion remark had been pulled by speech writers, and was only put back in the speech when Reagan penned a note to put it back in. It was hoped that this FOIA would provide some similar insights.
The plan was thwarted by the constant use of the B5 FOIA exemption by the OSTP FOIA archivists who reviewed and sanitized the documents. The use of this exemption to hide the facts was expected. This exemption in short says that any internal advise given is exempt because if it were not people would be reluctant to give advice. The FOIA release showed that page after page was exempted from release and none of the group of 4 that appeared to work on the ET reply had their advice or opinions made public. The OSTP simply used the B5 exemption to cover everything that happened behind the scene.
One filed FOIA attempted to find out the highest level name responsible for Larson being given the job to draft the official ET petition reply. That FOIA failed to produce a name, although another more detailed FOIA will be filed to try to determine the answer. The FOIA failed because the ET petition reply was assigned to OSTP by Katelyn Sabochik who runs the “We the People” site on the White House Website. As she does not work for OSTP, she and whoever she gets her orders from are outside the scope of the FOIA.
The FOIA documents showed that the only outside agency contacted by the OSTP for comment and correction was NASA. The OSTP offices in previous administrations contacted the CIA for information but this did not happen this time.
At NASA Bob Jacobs, the Deputy Assistant Administrator of Public Affairs, (seen below schmoozing with Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong) and David Weaver, Associate Administrator for the Office of Communications, were sent a draft of the ET petition response. Both had nothing to add or change. This is no surprise considering that neither man is a working scientist with any expertise in the available UFO evidence, but rather senior administrators specializing in government, politics, media relations and public policy. When the OSTP went public with their ET petition reply Jacobs retweeted the news to the world on his twitter page but made no mention of NASA’s involvement.
The most important document in the FOIA release was the reply to the FOIA that asked for all documents that would show that President Obama or someone representing him in the Oval Office actually saw the petition that 12,000+ people thought they were sending to him. The reply was “no records” which means that Obama, according to available OSTP records, never saw the petition.
Summing it Up
So what’s the latest on aliens – which incidentally is the e-mail heading that was used by OSTP people when e-mailing each other on the ET petition reply? Simply put “We the People” got screwed – again.
The documents released by the OSTP showed that the OSTP appeared to spend less time putting out an official statement than those 12,000+ people who signed the ET petition took to add their signatures. A big part of this regressive attitude may go back to the OSTP decision to consider “UFOs and birth certificates as ‘off-topic’” issues when it comes to their open government plan.[i]
The documents released also confirmed that the evidence for a possible ET presence on Earth is still unchallenged. It’s not like the White House did a study and found that we are wrong, or that our evidence is bad. The White House simply took a lazy political approach to the petition request. Their main goal was to stay clear of any controversy that properly dealing with the petition might have presented.
The whole exercise “We the People” petition site was meant to make the American public think that the White House actually cared about their opinion by putting up a link on the White House website where they could sign their names on issues they cared about.
The answer to the ET petition showed that in reality that the “We the People” site is a shallow political marketing effort sort of like the appeal that American will be hearing many times in the next year – your vote counts. The reality is the status quo. The White House is staffed by politicians, political advisors, and politically appointed staffs who are interested in power and in maintaining their jobs. They will continue to take the easy road as they have on other issues such as the federal debt. They will continue to promote the idea that it is government of the people by the people, when in fact it is a game of what to said, what not to say, how to say it, and staying in power by making it sound like you really give a damn when you really don’t.
The White House, its website, and the ‘We the People” petition site will always take second place to political consultants who know the names of the 13,000 Washington lobbyists, and the names of the people who pay up to $35,800 to attend political fundraising dinners. It is about votes and how to get elected and then reelected. It is projected that the 2012 election will cost 6-7 billion. That money will come from interest groups who will want their interests protected. They are ones being listened to – not those signing petition on ‘We the People.”
The FOIAs to the OSTP on the ET petition have sadly confirmed these truths about how things are really in Washington. Hopefully no one will be terribly surprised.
A couple new FOIAs will be filed based on the information released in these FOIAs. Nothing new or revealing is expected. The just released OSTP documents can be viewed at
[i] Office of Science & Technology – Open Government Plan – http://www.whitehouse.gov/open/around/eop/ostp/plan
Written by Grant Cameron
Written by Grant Cameron